This will be about my views on what it takes to put a three dimensional world onto a two dimensional surface. With a lot of digressing.
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Sep 25, 2012


This post was going to be about French Easels, therefore the title. Heavy to carry, frustrating to set up.I suppose it becomes second nature to the experienced traveler, or Plein Air painter however.
Speaking of which, I did a post on that subject many moons ago, suggesting that Plein Air painting led to Van Gogh's suicide. I think if he had a French Easel available, (after all he was in France at the time,) he would have shot himself a lot earlier.
However, as the twisted mind of Fate would have it- I found myself wishing I had thought to bring along my French Easel instead of my porchade box on a tripod. Although it was a lovely Guerrilla Painter box, and as it happens, Himself (Carl Judson) showed up, nice, but the fact remains that the day was a disaster.
Stay with me, all who yearn to join the profitable ranks of the Plein Air Painters.
Easton Md held their usual well attended annual Plein Air Painting competition in July. The hottest month of the hottest year, when the humidity and the temperature try to outdo each other.
This may be why the week long extravaganza of painting, showing and selling has been so successful.
Only the determined know what it takes to show up and survive.
Determined to paint well, determined to sell, win a prize, or buy a painting.
I was not one of the painters, but as a local I decided to try an open to anyone event named Quick Draw.
You set up and paint in a restricted area for 2 hours, 10 til 12 only. They should name it High Noon.
Your painting on its easel is lined up for a block or so and judged at 1 PM, and you're expected to have it in a frame. Meanwhile the streets are swarming with art aficionados.

Now mind you, I'm a studio painter. You know who you are.
Along with my porchade box, tripod, and crap-cart, I had a huge white Utrecht umbrella. I found a subject within the designated painting area, set up on a comfortable overcast morning, and got to work on a 10x8 panel. Piece of cake. Yeah, sure.
The umbrella was a little much to be clamped on to the tripod, but OK until it started raining. It was not waterproof. Foolish me. It rained so hard that my subject, the sweet porch with geraniums and a wicker chair, started to fill with people.
Meanwhile rain was running down my neck and down the surface of the painting. I had a half hour left, said ----- it, put my brushes away and took out my painting knife. Wiped off some, laid on some.
The Red Door  Oil on Board  Margery Caggiano
Come to think of it, if I'd used my French Easel, I'd still be folding the legs and blah blah blah.
Bottom line -sold in 5 minutes. Now what do I do?

1 comment:

  1. Hi Margery,
    I love your posts! Witty and funny! Best of all, you reveal your incredible talent. I love your Quick Draw painting. I remember that day well, a truly difficult day to paint. I understand why The Red Door sold within five minutes!
    Your Friend,